Grateful Thoughts

Mastermind Weekend 1/16

Hey there!

I'm Tina

I’m the owner of Carrots ‘N’ Cake as well as a Certified Nutrition Coach and Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner (FDN-P). I use macros and functional nutrition to help women find balance within their diets while achieving their body composition goals.


An in-depth, 4-week reverse dieting course for women who feel like their metabolism has slowed down, think they might have hormonal imbalance and can’t lose weight no matter what they do.

Good morning! 😎

I just got back from a wonderful Yoga Foundations class. It was slow-paced with lots of stretching and balance poses. It was just what I needed this morning.

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At the start of class, the instructor asked us to dedicate our practice to ourselves or a loved one, like she normally does. Then, she asked us to think of one part of our bodies that we were grateful for. My mind immediately went to the huge zit on my chin. (Awesome job, Tina. Way to be positive.)

Before I could think of something else, the instructor pointed out that women, in particular, often identify something negative about their bodies before the positive. I guess I fell into that trap, too, so I changed my thought to my feet, which take some serious beating during my marathon training, but have carried me for miles and miles”” 125 of them in the last month alone!

The fact that I immediately thought of something negative about my body bummed me out, so, going forward, I’m really going to try to focus on the positive and not let my mind slip into that negative place.

Last Night’s Dinner

Mal and I cooked another fantastic meal for dinner last night. Go us! We made a fast and easy Vegetable Fried Rice.

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Instead of using canola oil like the recipe called for, we used coconut oil, which has all sorts of health benefits and added a delicious coconut flavor to the meal. I guess you could say our dinner was Coconut Fried Rice. Doesn’t that sounds much more exciting?

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I didn’t have a ripe banana to make my original Protein Pancake recipe, so I played around with some different ingredients this morning. I love the idea of healthy carbs mixed with protein. It starts my day off on the right foot and keeps me full for hours.

Vanilla Protein Pancake


  • 1/4 cup rolled oats
  • 1 scoop of vanilla protein powder
  • 1 tbsp ground flaxseed meal
  • 1/3 cup liquid egg whites
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


  1. In a bowl, mix together ingredients.
  2. Preheat a skillet (medium-low heat), spray with non-stick spray, and pour in half of the batter while shaping it into a pancake with a spoon.
  3. Heat until partially cooked and flip pancake.
  4. Once cooked through, top with syrup, nut butter, fresh fruit or anything else your heart desires.

Makes 1 large pancake

My pancake was thick and hearty with a sweet vanilla flavor from the protein powder and vanilla extract. I topped it with banana slices and maple syrup. So delicious.

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I also drank an iced coffee with soy milk.

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Three Questions Thursday

Here’s the next edition of Three Questions Thursday!

I’ve been reading your blog for a couple years now. Although I’m a number of years older than you I really enjoy it. However, sometimes I’m looking for perspective from someone with a similar lifestyle as me. I am turning 40 this year and have three young kids. You can see how my life can pose different challenges than yours when it comes to schedules, eating, etc. Since you are in the blog world I was hoping you may be able to recommend a blog or blogs that are geared towards women in this stage of their life.

Here are some of favorite blogs that are geared toward women in this stage of their life. Happy reading!

I remember reading that you read all sorts of books on nutrition when you first started your journey. I was wondering if you had any recommendations on books I should check out.

Yep! Here are a few of the books that helped me lose weight and continue to motivate me to live a healthy lifestyle.

How the heck do you workout so much? Do you get tired of it? I mean, you run A LOT, go to yoga, and scheduled as well as impromptu Body Pump classes. Do you do this to “stay on track” or is it more just a want to be active? I’d say, personally, I was born to be lazy… and I just do my best to not be. So, I guess I’m just wondering if your kind of drive is innate or can be “self-taught”?

Great question! I guess it’s a little bit of both. I’ve always been active””my mom put me in ballet classes at 3 years old and I played soccer from 2nd grade until I graduated from high school””so exercise has always been a part of my life. It’s pretty much routine for me nowadays.

I also really like to be active. There’s just something about getting out there and moving that makes me happy. (Yay, endorphins!) Sticking to a regular exercise routine is all about finding something you like to do. I’ve tried all sort of workouts over the years, but I only regularly participate in the ones that I enjoy. As much as regular exercise is about staying on track for me, it’s something that I really like doing too.

I also think a lot of my exercise motivation was “self-taught.” For me, scheduling my workouts every Sunday for the upcoming week really keeps me on track. I check out my marathon training schedule and the group exercise classes at my gym and then plug them into my Google Calendar. Finding times that work for all of my workouts helps to keep me motivated. Plus, exercising consistently makes it easier to just keep doing it and, before know you it, it becomes a habit. Additionally, the just do it mentality gets my butt in gear. If I think about how much I don’t want to exercise or how tired I am, it makes it so much harder to workout. But, if I put my brain in autodrive and don’t think about those things, it’s so much easier to just do it!

Question of the Day

What is one part of your body that you are grateful for?

P.S. I’m offering an OpenSky deal on SpiBelts today!



  1. I’m grateful for my shoulders and upper arms! They’ve been getting so much stronger over the last couple months and making me feel really confident in my summer clothes =)

  2. I love your honestly on the negative thoughts. WAY too often women internally look down on themselves. This is a habit we definitely need to break. Your body can sense whether you love it or hate it and it will respond accordingly. I am very grateful for my legs, because Tuesday they carried me up a 14,270ft mountain and this morning they carried me 7 miles!

  3. I am extremely grateful for my legs. Not only have they allowed me to run, bike and swim many miles they get used and abused at work too. They carry me through 13+ hours a night as a registered nurse and allow me to help others who are sick and can’t walk as well. They don’t look as nice as they used to but they are still very strong and beautiful.

  4. I’ve been blessed with strong muscular legs. I used to dream about having skinny long legs (like the girls in fitness magazines), but running has brought a new appreciation for my legs and I am proud to show them off in short skirts and dresses when hubby and I go out. They might not be slender, but they are powerful!

  5. I am most grateful for my legs- not for their appearance (especially their current state- surgery), but rather for their function! They have been there for me throughout many hours of sports practice while growing up and still through today’s fitness routines! Despite the multiple ankle breaks and tendonitis in my knees, they’re pretty fabulous 😛

  6. Nice- I love the attempt at positive thoughts. Ever thought of keeping a gratitude journal? I started one in high school and it really changed my perspective (ie: I became a lot more aware of what I have in life)… and it only took like five to ten minutes to journal! I would just jot down a few things that I was grateful for… not even complete sentences!

  7. I think to really get into exercise, you have to do it probably 6 times a week for about 3 weeks. When I was getting into fitness, I hated it the whole time, but i knew that I had to stick with it if I wanted results. Then, all of a sudden, I was learning to love it! I would look forward to my workouts every day and longed for them if I had to skip. It became more important to me than just getting into shape – it was fun, calmed my mind, and made me feel great! You just have to break through those few weeks of annoyance 🙂

  8. I don’t think it’s just women….I think society has really contributed the way both men and women “should” view themselves. Hollywood, television, the fashion world, etc. have done a fantastic job of portraying what people should NOT strive for…they’ve really twisted it around, haven’t they? I used to fall into that trap…however recently, I’ve embraced the way my body looks – it isn’t so bad at age 30 for having three kids 🙂 My favorite part …my stretchmarks on my legs. A reminder of motherhood 🙂

  9. My hands. Physically not very attractive because I have an allergy to the sun which caused an eruption of small warts. But they are so uniquely personalized to each person and constant reminders of how beautiful it is to be human. Opposable Thumbs for the Win!

  10. Tina – I love your cooking challenge!!!!! That Veggie Fried Rice looks amazing! Clicking!! 🙂

    I’m a fan of my back. I know it’s strange, but I have a pretty ripped back from yoga and Jillian Michaels, and I can’t stop pointing it out to people in my wedding pictures. Gross, I know right? 🙂

  11. I’m thankful for my legs! Although I have pretty big thighs for my size, they allow me to climb the two flights of stairs from the laundry room in the basement to our bedroom on a regular basis! I guess I’m thankful for my arms and shoulders too since they carry the laundry 🙂

  12. Ooo I like this! Hmm, I’m grateful for my stomach because while its the least pretty part of my body (easily my biggest trouble spot), it reminds me that imperfection can be a lovely thing, a thing that teaches me humility, patience and acceptance.

  13. Tina, you just read my mind!!! Thank you for posting these links to mom-friendly fit blogs. I just had baby #4, 12 days ago and I am itching to get back to my fit self. I read your blog every day and I love your ideas and stories. While I get tons of great tips from you (I promise I do!) I was also looking for someone with kids who is fit to follow. I sometimes read your posts and think longingly about my early married times and even my single lady days… you have so much zest for life and I think that is one of the things that makes your blog fun to follow.Thanks for posting these sites, I am looking forward to exploring them. As for my favorite body part, ahem, my “girls” because right now, they are nourishing my little bundle and I am thankful to give him the best nutrition I can. 🙂

  14. What a great question for us to ask ourselves! I think my favorite body part is my collarbone. I’m not very graceful, and years of running and liftng have made made me more like someone who kicks a** than someone who does kickline, but I think I look ladylike when I wear a top or dress that shows off my clavicles. 🙂

  15. What a great idea to add coconut oil to that stir fry!! I love it on warmed bagels with a bit o’ honey. SO GOOD.

    You have such a great attitude Tina. I love the way you quickly turned around that negative thought… you were very conscious of your thought process and knew you dind’t want that one little thought to drag you down. It’s not so easy for a lot of people to do that!

    Like many other readers (runners!) here I am also VERY grateful for my legs. They have shown me I am capable of SO much more than I ever thought possible.

    My mother has been bed-ridden with MS for over ten years now and she used to be super active. I don’t ever want to take for granted being healthy and strong enough in mind and body to run 🙂

    I think I’m gonna buy a SpiBelt BTW! I have had the tab open all day on my browser at work haha

  16. I have a question for three question Thursday. What factors do you think explain the lack of racial and ethnic diversity in the healthy living blogger community?

  17. Love your honesty Tina! 🙂 I tend to focus on the negative too, but it’s something I’m working on. Keep us posted on how it goes for you.

    I’m grateful for my eyes and that they allow me to see all the beautiful sights in the world!!

  18. Love this post Tina and I love your honesty in this. I tend to focus on the negative to quickly too and slip into a negative place, but I’ve been trying to stop that voice in my head and to just really focus on the positive. It’s hard to do and I have to be really proactive about it and remember to be grateful for all that I have. Like my legs, I’m grateful for how strong they are to take me places, to pedal hard and fast through my spinning classes, and to sport a sassy pair of heels 😉

  19. Made the stir-fry but it was so salty. Did you use 3/4 of a cup like the recipe said? I should have read the reviews below the recipe before I started because someone else thought theirs was salty too.

  20. After reading the last question of the day, I just thought I’d comment about a book that really helped me get started (I haven’t even finished it yet, but it’s really good.) It’s called “Zen and the Art of Running”… This book teaches you how to let go of negative associations that we make with things such as running/working out and making it such a big ordeal to just get out there and run. Consciously taking away those negative associations from running has made it so much easier. I just think about how running ACTUALLY feels for me – and and my body really loves it! A lot of times it’s just your mind being wacko. I’ve just started getting back into runing for real and I love it so much I actually look forward to my runs now =]

  21. what a great post! I was definitely grateful for my arms and all the work I’ve done on them while I was carrying boxes of my stuff up into my new apartment this morning! I’m also grateful for your book recommendations – always looking for new nutrition reads! 🙂

  22. Wow, that last question was something I was going to ask you! I really need to get into a consistant routine with working out. I find it so hard tho!! I always feel better after a work out, and know all the benefits but GOD im lazy!! LOL working on it!!

  23. When I first read your post I also immediately tried to think of something about myself that I liked. But what happened is exactly what you did–start thinking of the negative. But when I stop and do think of a positive feature I almost feel guilty for posting it. It seems that we as women are ‘trained’ from childhood to believe that if we actually do like something about ourself or our body then we’re bragging or being conceited. Why can’t we simply embrace it? Why does it have to be wrong? And having said that, I like my arms. They are toned and fit for the first time ever! I mean really, I worked hard enough to get ’em so why can’t I like them! 🙂 AND I’m over 40! 🙂

  24. When I run, I am really thankful for my legs and that I am able to do the things I’m able to do with them. I would say my favorite body part (look wise) would be my ankles. They are tiny and if I lived in the 1800s, I would be a hot item. 🙂

    And that veggie rice looks SOOOOOOOOO good.

  25. okay, so I immediately thought of the negative too…and then stopped myself. I am grateful for my legs (particularly my quads)…I have always hated my legs for not being “skinny”, for being short and
    “trunk like”….but now after tons of spin classes and biking, I like them for being muscular. I am never going to be tall and skinny, but I am always getting compliments now on my muscular legs and it makes me grateful for all of the hard work I put into working out and proof that it shows. I used to hate shorts, but now I enjoy checking out my quads in the gym mirror (so guilty of that!) as I walk by.

  26. I would have to say I am most grateful for my legs. I complain about them alot because I have huge (make that HUGE) calve muscles, and my thighs are thickly muscular too… but I never do specific leg exercises, and my muscles stay strong and my legs stay fit! I have no cellulite despite gaining weight at times in my life, including during a pregnancy! I am grateful for my very athletic muscle build and am learning to love it for what it offers me! Though I would still love to fit into a pair of tall boots some day!

  27. What a great post! “Focus on the positive”. It is SO easy to get sucked into the negative…I literally have to try to focus on anything positive – no matter how small. It’s hard though and takes time.

    That pancake came out perfectly! I’m copying down that recipe 🙂

  28. Do I really have to limit to ONE part of my body!? I love my ENTIRE BODY!!! I love my legs because they let me walk. I love my arms because they allow me to cook, drive, open doors, put make up on my face, give me balance… that list could go ON AND ON… EVERYTHING I tell you! Even if I have a “fat” day, I still love my body, it has to deal with a lot!

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